How important was the role of Africa in World War Two?

Sep 2011
24,135
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I have recently been learning about Operation Pedestal, I wrote a brief few words about it on my blog because I found it so very interesting. It got me more interested in the parts of the world that we do not immediately think of when we hear about world war two.

How important was the role of Africa in world war two?
 

Robert165

Ad Honorem
Jan 2010
4,266
North Georgia
I have recently been learning about Operation Pedestal, I wrote a brief few words about it on my blog because I found it so very interesting. It got me more interested in the parts of the world that we do not immediately think of when we hear about world war two.

How important was the role of Africa in world war two?
Do you mean african fighting forces or africa as a geographical/tactical fighting field? Or both?
 

irishcrusader95

Ad Honorem
Aug 2010
6,740
Ireland
it tied up a lot of german forces and resources which would have been better employed on the eastern front, while the forces in africa only consisted of a single corps but the constant replacements and supplies that were sent there was a wast on objectives that would achieve them little even if the did reach the Suez canal. its importance for the british is that it gave them a victory which they sorely needed for the many let downs of the past few years and gave there army much needed combat experience making them better prepared for the invasions of mainland europe.
 

Chookie

Ad Honorem
Nov 2007
7,628
Alba
It was, in many ways, crucial. Leaving aside the Western Desert Theatre and the US adventures in Morocco, Africa provided men and munitions, access to the middle-eastern oil fields, naval bases, port and Rest and recreation facilities for troops and the Suez Canal.
 
Dec 2011
473
N. Ireland
Rommel vs PATTON????

I think you'll find that Patton was a very minor player at the very end of the N. African campaign, where Rommel fought various British Generals for over 2 years, until overwhelmed by Montgomery at El Alamein.
 
Apr 2011
727
A dress rehearsal for allied large scale amphibious landing...and taking Italy out of the war eventually.
 
Nov 2011
99
It was necessary to show America what the Brits had already learned about fighting the Germans. Counter-historically, I wonder how the raw but fresh US troops would have been chewed up had they faced a European invasion instead of the training ground of Vichy Africa.
 
Dec 2011
348
Minnesota
I think Germany would have been better served to have Italian, as well as Arab force's take the lead in Africa and would have left Rommel out of the theater of operation.
For one it is too unimportant a theater to risk tarnishing his thereby Germany's honor by losing a major campaign. Also his superb and swift use of armor would have been better suited for the Soviet plain's and may have turned the tide if utilized in that theater instead.